Gill’s Jaren Sina commits to Seton Hall (updated)

Fittingly, Jaren Sina delivered the good news to Seton Hall men’s basketball coach Kevin Willard in between jump shots.

The Gill St. Bernard’s senior was working out in the gym Wednesday afternoon when he called Willard to make the commitment the Pirates desperately needed. After pledging to Alabama as a sophomore and then signing with Northwestern last fall—before opting out when coach Bill Carmody was fired last month—Sina decided there was no place like home.

“It’s an opportunity to play in New Jersey for the home state, and I’m a guy who can contribute and help that program,” said Sina, who also was being pursued by Indiana. “Having a great relationship with the whole coaching staff, it feels like the right fit for me.”

A sharpshooting guard who can play point or off the ball, the 6-foot-1 Sina averaged 21.3 points and 9.1 assists per game this past winter, hitting 117 3-pointers to lead the Knights to a 19-8 record against a national schedule.

For his career, Sina scored a Somerset County-record 2,146 points and handed out 861 assists while shooting 46 percent from 3-point range. He helped Gill St. Bernard’s post a 91-22 record and win two Somerset County Tournament titles and one sectional championship.

He is also a good student and teammate, and he comes in already having a strong rapport with the equally likable Gibbs.

“He’s had an amazing career,” said N.J. Hoops publisher Jay Gomes, the state’s foremost talent evaluator. “He’s one of the best shooters probably the state has seen in a long time. This year he had to take on a different role as more of a distributor and he did a tremendyous job of that, made other players better. He just knows how to play.”

Seton Hall, which has plenty of playing time available in the backcourt, was a natural choice after Carmody was fired. Assistant Dan McHale had built a strong relationship with the family. When Willard hired Fred Hill, who had recruited Sina to Northwestern, it made the fit that much more comfortable.

It didn’t hurt that Sina’s dad and coach, Mergin, played for the Hall under P.J. Carlesimo before transferring to Rhode Island.

“We’re ecstatic,” Mergin Sina said. “He’ll have his family and friends here to provide support. And the playing time is there, so he’ll have an opportunity to go through ups and downs on the court. Not many freshmen are going to get that.”

It also helped that Willard runs an offense predicated on precision passing and 3-point shooting—Sina’s primary skills.

“I think I can contribute at either guard spot with my ability to shoot the ball and stretch out defenses and get in the lane and kick,” Sina explained. “They use a lot of pick-and-rolls, stuff I am used to.”

The Hall will have a Jersey-heavy backcourt next season as Sina joins Scotch Plains native Sterling Gibbs, who sat out this past winter after transferring from Texas, and standout wing Fuquan Edwin of Paterson. Both Sina and Gibbs should see major minutes right away because two-year starting guard Aaron Cosby transferred to Illinois and sophomore guard Tommy Maayan’s future at the school is uncertain due to a looming Israeli military service requirement.

Sina’s commitment is a much-needed boost to the Pirates’ recruiting. He is the second member of their 2013 class, joining junior college forward Stephane Manga. Now he plans to help Willard add to the roster.

“No one knows the process better than me,” he said. “I’ll be able to recruit any kid. I’ve seen everything.”

His first order of business Wednesday, though, was getting up the rest of his shots.

14 thoughts on “Gill’s Jaren Sina commits to Seton Hall (updated)

  1. BleedingPirateBlue

    Fight Fight Fight, For The Blue & White, and The Glory of Seton Hall!!! Program Difference Making Commitment!!! Welcome Jaren!!! Go Pirates!!!

  2. Piratefocus

    Seton Hall Yessss!

    The Basketball program just hit a homerun with is committment.

    Excellent job Coach Willard and Staff and.......

    GO PIRATES!!!!!!!

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  4. FuFighter

    Great job Jerry, being the guy to break this wonderful news. I can finally move on from being so close with KA...

    All Jersey backcourt will be something to watch.

    We're on our way back baby!!!

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  6. nj07079

    Congratulations to Sina and the Hall. Welcome aboard the Pirate ship.

    Sina and Gibbs playing together in the backcourt for the next three seasons will become an awesome pair when it comes to ball handling, ball control, ball distribution and shooting.

    I hope Maayan will stay. I like him. I'd love to see how he progresses. He was turnover machine. However, I just get the vibe that he will get much better.

  7. Old Curmudgeon

    It's been a long time coming, but finally great news for Seton Hall. It's going to be exciting next year watching two guards with high IQs on and off the court. Also to boot, they are both Jersey natives.

  8. PirateBlue

    Jerry -- Ditto on the great job on breaking the story. Maybe this is the one recruit (Like Mark Bryant) to get the ball rolling. And maybe Bob Hurley wlil realize that his kids are better off going to SHU to play in the Big East rather than the Big Ten beatdown that Rutgers is going to get. What a difference one recruit makes. Anything else in the pipeline?

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  10. RJ

    Great news, much needed. In the shadow of the Rutgers mess, as well as the Aquille Carr / Aaron Cosby / Tom Mayaan kerfuffle, landing Sina keeps momentum on SHU's side. Gibbs, Hill, Manga, and now this - it's a good start, but still work to do. Go Hall!

  11. Post author

    Blue, they're going to bring one or two more players aboard, but this was their biggest target, at least from a public perception standpoint. You are right, what a difference one recruit makes. Assuming Mobley's shoulder heals properly and does not continue to pop out, the Hall should have a solid, competitive first seven next winter. Still need to add depth.

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